Fitness is important. That is a given. However, very few people know how important it is to have fitness GOALS. Fitness goals are important because of several reasons. They encourage us to push ourselves. They help expand the boundaries of our physical limitations. They also help us hold ourselves accountable for our lifestyles. The tricky bit comes when you want to set those goals.
Setting Exercise Goals – A Simple Guide
So you’re ready to give up being a slob. You’re ready to say goodbye to eating pizza while you stream TV shows on your Frontier internet service. You’re ready to start putting in work at the gym. All are very commendable states to be in. But you’re still lacking an important something. What are your fitness goals?
A good fitness goal can be your guiding light when you’re having a bad day or a series of bad days. Provided you have thought out and structured your fitness goal properly, it will act as an incentive. This will keep you motivated during times when life seems to be weighing heavily on you.
The problem is, too many people choose unattainable or unrealistic fitness goals. That’s the very first step gone wrong. Then when they fail to achieve their goal, they feel disappointed. When they feel disappointed, they begin to slide back into old habits. Back to square one in just a few months. So much for a New Year’s resolution, right? Luckily, these tips can help you avoid common mistakes and set the right exercise goals to meet your fitness objectives:
- One Thing At a Time
- Own Your Goal
- Set Specific, Measurable, & Time-bound Goals
- Set Attainable Goals
Let’s take a closer look at these tips below.
One Thing at a Time
People make the very common mistake of setting too many exercise goals at the same time. Let’s say you want to cut out sugar completely, work out in the gym every day, and get eight hours of sleep. When you put too much on your plate, you just sabotage your efforts to succeed. If you have set too many goals for yourself, you are bound to feel anxious when you fail to meet them.
Once this happens, you start to see yourself negatively again. In a state like this, the chances of you achieving any of your original goals are unlikely. So what do you do? Take it one goal at a time. Pick ONE thing you want to do 100%.
It could be as simple as doing your first pull-up or running your first half marathon. The point is you want to have one goal in front of you at a time. Work on it, then progress to the next one.
Own Your Goal
These days, you get bombarded by images of fitness buffs, professionals, celebrities, and models with the perfect bodies. A simple scrolling session on Instagram is enough to give anyone a negative image about their own bodies. When you head to the gym, you see super fit people working out with heavier weights. You feel envious of where they are compared to where you are in terms of fitness.
But there’s one important point you are failing to grasp. Your goal is your goal. Top athletes may be able to run marathons, bench 200 pounds, or do 100 pushups. Good for them. But it is not a metric for you to measure yourself against. Don’t go about trying to achieve other people’s goals. Focus on your own realistic and attainable ones.
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Set Specific, Measurable, & Time-Bound Goals
Keeping your goal measurable is one good way to keep track of your progress. When you have a specific goal in mind, your path to it becomes clearer. So you should have goals that are both specific and measurable.
Let’s say you set a goal for yourself to become stronger. That’s great, but your goal is too subjective. Now if you set a goal to increase the number of pushups you do by 10 reps, that is measurable. To make it even sharper, set yourself a goal to be able to do 10 extra pushups in 2 weeks. Now you have a time-bound, specific, and measurable goal to achieve. Much better than simply having a goal to get stronger.
Set Attainable Goals
This is perhaps the most important step in the goal-setting exercise. Your goal should not be some magical transformation that will happen in just a few months. Instead, it should be something attainable, relatively easy, and within reach. But why is this important?
When your goals seem easy, it means you have fewer mental obstacles to work through. You need to have confidence in your ability to achieve your goals, which is why you should set goals within your reach. Most importantly, attainable goals give you a much-needed early win. This will motivate you to set more challenging goals as you get fitter.
But all that being said, no goal is going to be any good if you don’t commit to it. So get off your Frontier cable TV, get yourself some gym apparel, set your goals, and work towards them. If you follow the four tips listed above, you’ll find it easier to achieve them, and feel better about yourself. Share your fitness goal tips with us in the comments below.
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